Senator Tom Cotton and the Gang of 47

 

House Foreign Affairs CommitteeFrom a friend:

Somebody said this on Ricochet months ago—and nailed it: Tom Cotton is in the US Senate to break furniture.

The White House says Cotton’s merry gang of 47 is undermining the peace process? Peace process?!

I’d like Rubio (Walker too, if he’s got his sea legs) to get up this week and explain our new victory process.
 
We decide who gets the bomb. We win. They lose.

A new rule for sorting out GOP presidential candidates? Eliminate anyone unwilling to speak of “victory?”

I like that. I like it a lot. You?

There are 55 comments.

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  1. Quinn the Eskimo Member
    Quinn the Eskimo
    @

    Larry Koler:Did you two get confused and start thinking that the intended recipient of this letter was in Iran? It’s aimed at Obama, the Dems and the media.

    And Obama’s response to the letter will be to continue to get his agreement.  Veto sanctions.  Not enforce them if his veto is overridden.  (Surely, the sanctions will be enforced no more than immigration law.)  So I don’t think the Democrats will be impressed.

    And since a large section of the media has branded them “traitors” (unfairly, but it happened), I’m not sure that worked either.

    • #31
  2. Umbra Fractus Inactive
    Umbra Fractus
    @UmbraFractus

    Ross C:

    Peter Robinson:

    We decide who gets the bomb. We win. They lose.

    I like that. I like it a lot. You?

    I like the clear direction, but ultimately can this president or or republicans make the case to the American people as to why we need to risk war by intervening militarily in Iran.

    If you say “We decide” did we decide on Israel or India or Pakistan or North Korea or South Africa? One needs to make the case as to why Iran is worth war and North Korea was not.

    Because we learned from our mistake re. North Korea.

    • #32
  3. user_5186 Inactive
    user_5186
    @LarryKoler

    Quinn the Eskimo:

    Larry Koler:Did you two get confused and start thinking that the intended recipient of this letter was in Iran? It’s aimed at Obama, the Dems and the media.

    And Obama’s response to the letter will be to continue to get his agreement. Veto sanctions. Not enforce them if his veto is overridden. (Surely, the sanctions will be enforced no more than immigration law.) So I don’t think the Democrats will be impressed.

    And since a large section of the media has branded them “traitors” (unfairly, but it happened), I’m not sure that worked either.

    Let’s see how Cotton and the 47 handle this. This is calling Obama out.

    And the media will fight, too — you are right. That’s to be expected — they are the first line of defense for the Dems and they take their jobs in the Democratic Party very seriously. The Republicans can’t go wobbly now.

    • #33
  4. Steve C. Member
    Steve C.
    @user_531302

    And Obama’s response to the letter will be to continue to get his agreement.  Veto sanctions.  Not enforce them if his veto is overridden.  (Surely, the sanctions will be enforced no more than immigration law.)  So I don’t think the Democrats will be impressed.”

    Perhaps. Maybe the Senate will be emboldened and do something to uphold its prerogatives. Like, not confirming Presidential appointments.

    Slightly off topic, the scope and breadth of the federal budget has turned the power of the purse into an effective nullity. No politician in Congress wants to risk cutting off grandma’s Social Security check. In effect, the Democrats have gelded Congress.

    • #34
  5. Quinn the Eskimo Member
    Quinn the Eskimo
    @

    Cato Rand:

    Quinn the Eskimo:

    Cato Rand:I’m not sure you’re right. I’m not sure we can rely on the Iranians to appreciate that the stalling tactic they’re negotiating with the Obama regime won’t necessarily buy them the time they’re looking for. I think this move might throw a monkey wrench into the works in a real way.

    I’m sure they saw what happened in Libya when the Libyans gave up their nuclear weapons program. We shouldn’t expect the Iranians to be that naive not know that.

    A fair point. But then we’re left with the question of what to do? War? (I’m reluctantly not sure the answer to that question is “no” by the way. I do wonder if we couldn’t try some version of “blow the stuff up we want to blow up and kill the guys we want to kill, and then leave and let them sort the rest out” this time.)

    I’m not sure how war would work in this case, with Obama controlling the executive branch.  Obama doesn’t want to fight.

    Realistically, we have to turn to interested parties and assist them in whatever ways we can.  Not a great answer, but it’s hard to conduct foreign policy from Congress against a hostile president.

    • #35
  6. Quinn the Eskimo Member
    Quinn the Eskimo
    @

    Steve C.:“

    Perhaps. Maybe the Senate will be emboldened and do something to uphold its prerogatives. Like, not confirming Presidential appointments.

    If this is the rallying point that starts to energize Congress into getting its sorry act together, I will happily concede error.

    But at the moment, the Senate passed a measure to allow funding of Obama’s amnesty, can’t do anything about net neutrality and doesn’t seem prepared to use the debt limit as leverage for anything, so it’s hard to be hopeful that things are going to change.

    • #36
  7. user_5186 Inactive
    user_5186
    @LarryKoler

    Quinn the Eskimo:

    Steve C.:“

    Perhaps. Maybe the Senate will be emboldened and do something to uphold its prerogatives. Like, not confirming Presidential appointments.

    If this is the rallying point that starts to energize Congress into getting its sorry act together, I will happily concede error.

    But at the moment, the Senate passed a measure to allow funding of Obama’s amnesty, can’t do anything about net neutrality and doesn’t seem prepared to use the debt limit as leverage for anything, so it’s hard to be hopeful that things are going to change.

    Yes, you are right to be cautious. But, we can hope, can’t we? Just a little.

    • #37
  8. Jager Coolidge
    Jager
    @Jager

    At the very least this letter put both McCain and Graham on the same side of an issue with Rand Paul. I think these guys have a real difference in foreign policy. If they all agree Mr. Obama is making a bad deal, hopefully it can mobilize the Republican led Congress.

    • #38
  9. Quinn the Eskimo Member
    Quinn the Eskimo
    @

    Larry Koler:

    Quinn the Eskimo:

    Larry Koler:Did you two get confused and start thinking that the intended recipient of this letter was in Iran? It’s aimed at Obama, the Dems and the media.

    And Obama’s response to the letter will be to continue to get his agreement. Veto sanctions. Not enforce them if his veto is overridden. (Surely, the sanctions will be enforced no more than immigration law.) So I don’t think the Democrats will be impressed.

    And since a large section of the media has branded them “traitors” (unfairly, but it happened), I’m not sure that worked either.

    Let’s see how Cotton and the 47 handle this. This is calling Obama out.

    And the media will fight, too — you are right. That’s to be expected — they are the first line of defense for the Dems and they take their jobs in the Democratic Party very seriously. The Republicans can’t go wobbly now.

    What would you like to see the Republicans do as a follow up that will have an impact?  I’m just not seeing realistic options.

    • #39
  10. CuriousKevmo Member
    CuriousKevmo
    @CuriousKevmo

    In my experience (granted I’m in deep blue SF Bay Area) Americans have become very uncomfortable with talk of “Victory”.  Very uncomfortable.  I don’t like it, it saddens me, but I believe it to be the truth.

    • #40
  11. user_1030767 Inactive
    user_1030767
    @TheQuestion

    Ross C:

    I like the clear direction, but ultimately can this president or or republicans make the case to the American people as to why we need to risk war by intervening militarily in Iran.

    t.

    Obama is doing the opposite of Reagan in the Cold War.  Reagan’s strategy gradually reduced the USSR’s ability to threaten us and our allies, and it led to a bloodless victory.  Iran does not have parity with Israel yet, but Obama is allowing Iran to gradually gain economically and militarily so that it will be able to stand equal with Israel.  At which point, it will either attack Israel with nuclear weapons, or at least use those weapons to deter retaliation for its incursions into other countries in the region.  Either way, Obama’s plan will mean more war, not less.

    • #41
  12. TKC1101 Inactive
    TKC1101
    @TKC1101

    Tom Cotton is in the Senate to represent his constituents. Saying he is there to “break furniture” is insulting and shows how even conservative minds are channeled by the crony media establishment.  His behavior is a bit refreshing, since he will unlikely retire a multi-millionaire from the senate by doing what he is elected to do.

    Worry over breaking furniture means we accept the personal financial gravy train we have allowed these crooks of both parties to enjoy.

    Our measurement process has been so warped by the elite media that we cannot see a true civil servant and patriot right in front of our eyes.

    • #42
  13. Autistic License Thatcher
    Autistic License
    @AutisticLicense

    Remember Nancy P’s fan portrait with Hugo Chavez, wearing red for the symbolism? Nothing to see here.

    See also Piedad Córdoba.

    • #43
  14. user_5186 Inactive
    user_5186
    @LarryKoler

    Quinn the Eskimo:

    Larry Koler:

    Quinn the Eskimo:

    Larry Koler:Did you two get confused and start thinking that the intended recipient of this letter was in Iran? It’s aimed at Obama, the Dems and the media.

    And Obama’s response to the letter will be to continue to get his agreement. Veto sanctions. Not enforce them if his veto is overridden. (Surely, the sanctions will be enforced no more than immigration law.) So I don’t think the Democrats will be impressed.

    And since a large section of the media has branded them “traitors” (unfairly, but it happened), I’m not sure that worked either.

    Let’s see how Cotton and the 47 handle this. This is calling Obama out.

    And the media will fight, too — you are right. That’s to be expected — they are the first line of defense for the Dems and they take their jobs in the Democratic Party very seriously. The Republicans can’t go wobbly now.

    What would you like to see the Republicans do as a follow up that will have an impact? I’m just not seeing realistic options.

    I really don’t care too much as long as it is used to highlight the prop that holds up the Democrats — the takeover of our media by the hard left. We need to have a real fight with them and it needs to be clear and powerful.

    • #44
  15. Jager Coolidge
    Jager
    @Jager

    Autistic License:Remember Nancy P’s fan portrait with Hugo Chavez, wearing red for the symbolism? Nothing to see here.

    Ms. Pelosi as House Speaker also lead a delegation of Congress to Syria in 2007 to visit Bashar Al-Assad in Damascus against the wishes of the Bush White House.

    • #45
  16. Instugator Thatcher
    Instugator
    @Instugator

    Jager:

    Autistic License:Remember Nancy P’s fan portrait with Hugo Chavez, wearing red for the symbolism? Nothing to see here.

    Ms. Pelosi as House Speaker also lead a delegation of Congress to Syria in 2007 to visit Bashar Al-Assad in Damascus against the wishes of the Bush White House.

    But, according to the media at that time, that was Not Treason.

    • #46
  17. Quinn the Eskimo Member
    Quinn the Eskimo
    @

    Larry Koler:

    Quinn the Eskimo:

    Steve C.:“

    Perhaps. Maybe the Senate will be emboldened and do something to uphold its prerogatives. Like, not confirming Presidential appointments.

    If this is the rallying point that starts to energize Congress into getting its sorry act together, I will happily concede error.

    But at the moment, the Senate passed a measure to allow funding of Obama’s amnesty, can’t do anything about net neutrality and doesn’t seem prepared to use the debt limit as leverage for anything, so it’s hard to be hopeful that things are going to change.

    Yes, you are right to be cautious. But, we can hope, can’t we? Just a little.

    I want to hope too.  Even more, I would like to win.  Very desperately.  That’s why I drew the comparison to Nancy Pelosi.  A House minority shouldn’t be capable of anything.

    That’s why this is so frustrating.

    • #47
  18. JimGoneWild Coolidge
    JimGoneWild
    @JimGoneWild

    I love Tom Cotton.

    • #48
  19. Mendel Inactive
    Mendel
    @Mendel

    Larry Koler:

    Did you two get confused and start thinking that the intended recipient of this letter was in Iran? It’s aimed at Obama, the Dems and the media.

    Not at all – I agree completely that the intended audience for this letter is domestic, not abroad (and said so somewhere else today).

    But you did leave out one group the letter is intended for: the conservative base.

    • #49
  20. user_5186 Inactive
    user_5186
    @LarryKoler

    Mendel:

    Larry Koler:

    Did you two get confused and start thinking that the intended recipient of this letter was in Iran? It’s aimed at Obama, the Dems and the media.

    Not at all – I agree completely that the intended audience for this letter is domestic, not abroad (and said so somewhere else today).

    But you did leave out one group the letter is intended for: the conservative base.

    So, at least some people are concerned about the base. Nice to know.

    • #50
  21. user_435274 Thatcher
    user_435274
    @JohnHanson

    The constitution says “He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur”

    The most interesting part of this phrase seems to the word “Advice”, as far as I know, George Washington was the last president for formally ask the senate for its “advice” in foreign policy, and to him it was a disaster, so he stopped asking.

    However, advice does not have to be asked for, to be given.  Occasionally the unasked for contains valuable lessons to which the President should listen. He won’t, but that doesn’t make the advice less valuable.  The senate has the duty under the constitution to offer “advice” to the president whether he wishes it or not.  This controversial letter performs that constitutional duty.  It is unfortunate that it was not signed by a majority of the senate, but it seems they certainly have the right to do so.   Nothing says the advice has to be couched as a letter directly to the president, and nothing says the advice has to be confidential.

    The letter reminds the US population of the limitations the constitution places on the presidents power and  might serve to limit the consequent damage.

    Certainly, Obama has no authority to bind the policy of the US with any foreign power beyond his term of office, without the 2/3rds consent of the US senate in the form of a treaty.

    While practical politics may seem to provide the ability of a president to exceed his role, doing so poses severe risks to the individual liberties we have and desire to keep.  Remembering the constitution remains one of our most important bulwarks against tyranny.

    • #51
  22. Ross C Member
    Ross C
    @RossC

    Instugator:

    Ross C:

    Peter Robinson:

    We decide who gets the bomb. We win. They lose.

    I like that. I like it a lot. You?

    I like the clear direction, but ultimately can this president or or republicans make the case to the American people as to why we need to risk war by intervening militarily in Iran.

    If you say “We decide” did we decide on Israel or India or Pakistan or North Korea or South Africa? One needs to make the case as to why Iran is worth war and North Korea was not.

    Because 1/2 of South Korea’ s 50 Million population (along with 30K US military) is within artillery range of 100K guns owned by N. Korea and all of Israel’s 8 million population is within range of MRBM out of Iran?

    I think the two are comparable but what is different that makes the North Korean policy of containment acceptable but for Iran we must preempt the bomb?

    I think what you are getting at is that we feared that N. Korea could retaliate with conventional weapons against So. Korea so we were justified in resorting to containment because a conventional war would be too costly for So. Korea.  Is that it?

    In Iran’s case, then you believe that military intervention will not be too risky because Iran’s capability to attack Israel with conventional weapons is relatively smaller (than N. Korea’s) and therefore the US and Israel are free to act as they wish?

    I am not sure if I have your right, but it sounds like your suggested policy is where we think we can act militarily with impunity we should do so.

    • #52
  23. Ross C Member
    Ross C
    @RossC

    Michael Sanregret:

    Ross C:

    I like the clear direction, but ultimately can this president or or republicans make the case to the American people as to why we need to risk war by intervening militarily in Iran.

    “Obama is doing the opposite of Reagan in the Cold War. Reagan’s strategy gradually reduced the USSR’s ability to threaten us and our allies, and it led to a bloodless victory.”

    Reagan’s policy it seems to me was peace through strength and it was a policy of containment with the Soviets who already had a strong nuclear arsenal.  It seems like what we are discussing here is more or less like attacking the Soviet Union in the late 1940s to preempt their nuclear ambitions.  I think the case that needs to be made is the case that containment will not work or that air strikes will work.

    I doubt that you and I disagree that much on this.  What I am trying to do is to argue this just a little more deeply than what I here.  I don’t think the solutions are simple and each road actually has quite a bit of risk in the medium term even if it seems modest now.

    • #53
  24. user_370242 Member
    user_370242
    @Mikescapes

    Senator Fullbright (D) Arkansas was an outspoken opponent of the Vietnam War. I don’t recall anyone referring to him as an enemy of the state. He was a hero of the left though he wasn’t of the left. He bucked his own party’s leader, Pres. Johnson.

    As chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, Fulbright held several series of hearings on the Vietnam War. Many of the earlier hearings, in 1966, were televised to the nation in their entirety (a rarity in the pre–C-SPAN era); the 1971 hearings included the notable testimony of Vietnam veteran and future Senator and Secretary of State John Kerry.

    In 1966, Fulbright published The Arrogance of Power, in which he attacked the justification of the Vietnam War, Congress’s failure to set limits on it, and the impulses which gave rise to it. Fulbright’s scathing critique undermined the elite consensus that U.S. military intervention in Indochina was necessitated by Cold War geopolitics.

    • #54
  25. Instugator Thatcher
    Instugator
    @Instugator

    Ross C:

    Instugator:

    Because 1/2 of South Korea’ s 50 Million population (along with 30K US military) is within artillery range of 100K guns owned by N. Korea and all of Israel’s 8 million population is within range of MRBM out of Iran?

    I think the two are comparable but what is different that makes the North Korean policy of containment acceptable but for Iran we must preempt the bomb?

    I think what you are getting at is that we feared that N. Korea could retaliate with conventional weapons against So. Korea so we were justified in resorting to containment because a conventional war would be too costly for So. Korea. Is that it?

    In Iran’s case, then you believe that military intervention will not be too risky because Iran’s capability to attack Israel with conventional weapons is relatively smaller (than N. Korea’s) and therefore the US and Israel are free to act as they wish?

    I am not sure if I have your right, but it sounds like your suggested policy is where we think we can act militarily with impunity we should do so.

    Re: N Korea and containment – the NK test on Oct 8, 2006 was a surprise coming 1 year after they signed an agreement to cease their quest for the bomb – but the reason to seek containment is because of the threat of conventional war AND the estimate that they had more nukes.

    Iran does not yet have a nuke and the aim of the mullahs to “destroy Israel” cannot be accomplished with Iranian conventional forces, only nuclear weapons can do that job – and it doesn’t take that many either. P. Obama’s deal guarantees that Iran will be free to acquire the bomb. As a last resort, I would support military action to deny Iran the capability.

    About 6 years ago, I was attending a bull session with some thinkers here – and one of them asked me what would I do to stop Iran from getting the bomb. My reply was that the endeavor to accomplish anything in the human field requires just the Will to do it and the Capability to do it.

    Will is hard to change, absent a significant emotional event – WW2 was so traumatic that the two most warlike cultures on the planet became pacifist.

    Capability can be boiled down to 3 basic ingredients: People, Money and Stuff. So my strategy to stop Iran would be to Kill the key people in the program, require them to re-prioritize their money, and find someway to sabotage their stuff.

    I would note that P. Obama is busy dismantling the strategy to combat capability.

    P. Obama has done nothing to attack the Will (and through his toppling of the Libyan government, actively encourages rogue regimes to acquire nuclear weapons) – so what’s left? He actually makes war more likely with his actions, not less.

    • #55
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